Important Ticketing Information for Club Members
As part of the RISSC (London) First Stage Application process, we are now taking advance orders from club members who wish to acquire tickets for the trio of home matches against Poland, England and Scotland. This First Stage process will end on the 30th November 2014 and our order will be immediately submitted to the FAI. Full details have been circulated to members via the club information letter issued this morning.
Irish teenagers in UEFA Youth League action...26/11/2014
As the UEFA Youth League reaches match series five in the Group Stage, a number of Irish teenagers are catching the eye. Manchester City qualified for the knock-out stage with a six nil victory over Bayern Munich on Tuesday afternoon. Eighteen year old midfielder Jack Byrne, scored two excellent goals to bring his tally to four in the five group matches played to date. Two more eighteen year olds, defender Daniel Cleary, who started and midfielder Alex O'Hanlon, a late substitute, were in action for Liverpool who secured a three nil success at PFC Ludogorets of Bulgaria this Wednesday afternoon. Their fate will be decided in their final group contest at home to current group leaders FC Basel on the 9th December 2014.
Premiership action in the Midlands this evening...24/11/2014
Irish involvement in the Premiership continued this evening when Aston Villa played out a one all draw with visitors Southampton. With injury and suspension impacting upon the host's centre back options, Ciaran Clark returned to the starting eleven and played his part in a resolute defensive performance. Shay Given was in his customery substitute role, together with teenager Jack Grealish. Visiting striker Shane Long was rewarded for his two goals, following his introduction from the bench in their last league encounter, with a starting position, but made little impact on this occasion.
Some Irish set for Sunday afternoon Premiership action...23/11/2014
Crystal Palace had Ireland fringe candidate Damian Delaney in their starting eleven for their three one victory over Liverpool at Selhurst Park early this afternoon, but the Corkman was forced off through injury after thirty six minutes. In this afternoon's late kick-off, only Robbie Brady made the starting eleven for Hull City who went down to a two one defeat by Tottenham Hotspur. International colleagues Stephen Quinn and David Meyler were both introduced from the substitute bench during the second half, most of which they played with ten men following a dismissal.
Premiership duty for international contingent...22/11/2014
A number of those involved in our two international contests last week were in Premiership action on Saturday afternoon. Everton had Seamus Coleman, and James McCarthy, who missed the international contests through injury, in their starting eleven for their two one victory over visitors West Ham United. Both Darron Gibson and Aiden McGeady were missing from the matchday squad. Sunderland had John O'Shea in defence for their scoreless draw at Leicester City, while Jon Walters and Stephen Ward were in direct opposition when Stoke City went down by two goals to one at home to Burnley. Walters scored the consolation goal for the hosts.
Saturday afternoon in the Championship...22/11/2014
Two clubs currently performing above expectation in the Championship, Bournemouth and Ipswich Town, played out a two all draw this afternoon, with visiting striker Daryl Murphy again on the scoresheet while midweek Ireland debutant David McGoldrick continued his recent good form. Fellow mid-week debutant Cyrus Christie and his international team mates Richard Keogh and Jeff Hendrick were in the Derby County side which went three points clear following their two one victory at Watford.
Midweek internationals in Championship action...21/11/2014
Two members of our successful Tuesday night international side were in Championship action this Friday evening when Cardiff City defeated visitors Reading by two goals to one. Midweek goalscorer Anthony Pilkington completed ninety minutes for the hosts but visiting centre back Alex Pearce had a night to forget, first conceding an own goal and then on the stroke of half-time he gave away the penalty which resulted in the second goal and his dismissal.
The long wait until March for international action...20/11/2014
This four month international football hiatus is most unwelcome for management and followers alike. We next see action on Sunday the 29th March 2015 when Poland visit Dublin for another crucial EURO 2016 qualifier. The grimness of Glasgow last Friday was followed by a lifting of spirits in the Aviva Stadium on Tuesday evening. We must remember however that the first was a crucial competitive contest, the second a friendly outing. Celtic Park was a nightmarish non-performance from both management and players, while D4 offered hope for the future. That hope however, still has some contrarian trepidation attaching to it. What will the intervening period bring by way of injury and form? will management have the courage to make the requisite changes in personnel, so clearly illuminated over all four competitive contests to date? So many questions surround the wholly unpredictable future. We wait in hope and fear, anticipation and dread, sometime agony and ecstasy, crazy, but we do it.
U17 and U19 Women's draws made this morning...19/11/2014
The draw for the Elite Stage of the 2014/15 U17 Women's UEFA Championship was made in Nyon this morning and sees Ireland located in Group Two with England, Holland and Hungary. The mini-tournament will be hosted by Ireland during April 2015. The draws for the Qualifying Round of the 2015/16 competitions were also made and Our Under 19 Women were top seeded in Group Ten alongside Russia, Slovenia (hosts) and Bulgaria. Our Under 17 Women were also top seeded and will face Turkey (hosts), Ukraine and Andorra in Qualifying Group One.
Ireland cruise to victory over lack lustre USA tonight...18/11/2014
Ireland recorded a welcome four one success over a lack lustre USA in tonight's friendly international at the Aviva Stadium. The visitors dominated the opening minutes but were rocked when debutant David McGoldrick played a delightful through ball for Anthony Pilkington to delicately chip his first international goal. With a whole array of unfamiliar faces in the side, Ireland were a little disjointed in the remainder of the half and were disappointed to concede the equaliser six minutes before the break. The second half saw Ireland perform with greater cohesion and 'Man of the Match' Robbie Brady, operating in the left back position, converted another fine McGoldrick pass to restore the lead. Both sides made a number of substitutions but Ireland remained in control and one of the new entrants, James McClean, scored the third goal on eighty two minutes. The result was given further gloss, four minutes from time, when Brady capped his excellent performance by converting a free kick from just outside the box. Debutant duo Cyrus Christie and David McGoldrick both caught the eye, while the aforementioned Brady, filled the left wing back position with some degree of aplomb, while his excellent dead ball ability must surely ensure that a place is found for him in future competitive starting elevens.
Management team face Aviva dilemma tonight...18/11/2014
Our management team face something of a dilemma as they prepare to face the USA in tonight's friendly encounter in the Aviva Stadium. Following the disappointing performance in Glasgow on Friday night, the rerstoration of confidence must be high on the agenda. However, the need to also look further ahead, with EURO 2016 qualification crucial to Martin O'Neill, presents another challenge. Clearly there will be a number of personnel changes as we seek to find the key to unlock the perceived qualities of several players which have remained quite latent to date. This contest, against a side sitting twenty third in the FIFA rankings, is challenging but it may well prove a defining night for certain members of our squad.